ST. LOUIS - Paul Stastny is excited to begin the second chapter of his NHL career with the St. Louis Blues this season.
The 28-year old center, who left the Colorado Avalanche this summer to sign a four-year contract with the Blues, participated in his first informal skate Friday and said afterwards he was a little apprehensive when he arrived in St. Louis this week.
"I think there's a little nervousness … there always is," Stastny said. "I think that comes with the territory, whether it's a new locker room, whether it's the start of the season. I think everyone does. If you don't get nervous, I think you lose your excitement and the love of the game.
Center - 2013-14 SEASON
Goals: 25 | Assists: 35 | Pts: 60
Shots: 150 | +/-: +9
"But at the same time, I'm a quiet guy so I'll sit around and fly under the radar and kind of get used to what guys have that dry sense of humor and what guys don't, what guys you can push and what guys you can't. I think once the season starts, I think you each kind of lead by example on the ice and from there everything kind of falls [into place] in the locker room and away from the rink."
A six-time 20-goal scorer, Stastny said he is looking forward to using training camp to build chemistry with his teammates on and off the ice. The Blues are slated to open camp Friday, Sept. 19; their regular season gets underway on Oct. 9 against the New York Rangers at Scottrade Center.
"I think there are a lot of good players, so you'll be able to see right away," Stastny said of working with potential linemates. "I'm a give-and-go kind of player so I'll be able to tell right away who's a give-and-go kind of player, who is, who isn't, who reads the game like I do. Whether it takes a couple of ice sessions or preseason games or it takes a couple of games in the [regular] season, it doesn't happen overnight but you slowly start building it from Day One."
Stastny, who spent the first eight seasons with the Avalanche, said he left Colorado on Wednesday. There will obviously be an adjustment for his family, but Stastny said it isn't difficult once he puts on his skates.
"For me, it's easy," Stastny said. "I told my wife once I get on the ice, I'm home again and I'm comfortable. That's what I do for a living, that's the thing I love to do most, so every time I'm out there I'm myself and for me that's easy."